Mar. 23, 2021

HARRISBURG – The state House Human Services Committee today held an informational meeting to discuss the 18 month long Warm Hand-Off Task Force and advisory committee report findings.

House Resolution 216 of 2019, authored by Rep. Todd Polinchock (R-Bucks), directed the Joint State Government Committee to establish a task force and advisory committee to conduct a study on current warm hand-off techniques for opioid substance abuse overdoses currently in place across the state and to make recommendations to improve techniques and protocols which will enhance the chances of recovery for those suffering from substance use disorders.

Five panels of experts from the task force joined the Human Services Committee today to elaborate on the findings of their research and discuss the best approaches moving forward to make warm hand-offs more successful and lead to longer lasting recovery progress.

“Opioids and other prescription medicines have a dangerous grip on our state. It is imperative we ensure those who are suffering initiate a treatment plan and follow through with the proper steps to an on-going recovery,” Polinchock said. “So many stuck in the vicious cycle of addiction don’t know where to turn and are often devoid of hope. The charge of this committee was to provide a more defined pathway to recovery and give those in need the hope and courage to persevere.”

A list of 20 professionals joined the Joint State Government Commission Task Force on Warm Hand-Offs including those from the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, Department of Health, Department of Human Services and the Department of Corrections. Contributors of the findings also included the PA adjutant general, emergency medicine physicians, county drug and alcohol administrators, researchers, certified specialists, a district attorney, law enforcement officials, a child advocate, and representatives of health insurance companies and recovery organizations as well as a non profit organization (The Kaitlyn Murphy Foundation) that emphasized the benefits of private-public partnerships.

“I look forward to taking the recommendations of this task force and enacting smart legislation that will give hope to those who often don’t feel any,” said Polinchock “We must never stop fighting to find effective ways to support those with addictions and provide long-term treatment to break the cycle of opioid abuse.

“These findings will save lives and I am so thankful for our long list of professionals who have given their time and expertise selflessly to provide solutions to continue to help Pennsylvanians who strive to keep hope alive in their battles against addiction” concluded Polinchock.

“Congratulations to Rep. Polinchock and the entire task force on this outstanding work over the past 18 months. They have provided an incredible amount of information and new findings to help increase successful recoveries,” said Human Services Committee Chairman, Rep. Frank Farry.

Representative Todd Polinchock
144th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Rene Morrow
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